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Libyan protesters closing in on Tripoli

Image
© Unknown
Protesters are seen close from the sea port of Benghazi city, Libya, February 23, 2011.
The Libyan government vigilantes and snipers struggle to regain control of the capital after pro-Gaddafi forces lost several cities to revolutionary protesters.

Reports say the revolution flag is now flying over Tajuraa city close to Tripoli. The western cities of Zwaara and Azzawiya are also under the control of the protesters.

This comes as more and more soldiers are now joining the popular revolution.

Anti-government protesters have also overrun the eastern province of Cyrenaica. This follows the fall of the second largest city of Benghazi.

Soldiers in the coastal town of Tobruk say Gaddafi's forces have lost control of the region. They say they no longer back the Libyan ruler. Tobruk lies close to the Egyptian border.

Radar

Malta denied entry to Gaddafi daughter

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© Unknown
A Libyan airforce pilot, after having landed in Malta
A plane possibly carrying Gaddafi's daughter has been refused a permission to land and was sent back to Libya after flying over Malta in an unscheduled flight, reports say.

Malta International Airport denied landing rights to a Libyan Arab Airlines aircraft, reported to be carrying Libyan tyrant Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's daughter, Ayesha, on Wednesday.

The plane circled for 20 minutes before heading back to Libya, Reuters reported.

A plane carrying several family members and Gaddafi's wife to her home country of Lebanon was also denied a landing permission.

The pilot of the ATR42 turboprop aircraft provided the airport with details from a previous flight, supposed to have landed in Malta on Tuesday, reports said.

People

Ahmadinejad condemns civilian killings in Libya

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© Wikipedia
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has condemned the killing of protesters in Libya and called on the Libyan government to respect the people's will. Demands for change shaking the Middle East would end the oppression of "arrogant" powers and would reach other continents like Europe or America,
unless discrimination and military occupation ended, he predicted.

"Instead of killing people, listen to them," Ahmadinejad said in comments aired on state television. He did not mention Libya's leader Muammar Gaddafi by name.

"How is it possible that a state leader uses bombers, tanks and cannons to kill his own people and afterwards warns that whoever says something will be killed. That is really ugly," Ahmadinejad added.

People

'I Won't Pay' Movement Spreads Across Greece

Metro station in Athens
© Thanassis Stavrakis / AP
A passenger passes a covered ticket machine with a plastic bag during a protest by PAME, a Communist Party-backed labor union, at the Syntagma Metro station in Athens.
In light of austerity measures, citizens ignore tolls, transit ticket costs, even bills for healthcare

Athens, Greece - They blockade highway toll booths to give drivers free passage. They cover subway ticket machines with plastic bags so commuters can't pay. Even doctors are joining in, preventing patients from paying fees at state hospitals.

Some call it civil disobedience. Others a freeloading spirit. Either way, Greece's "I Won't Pay" movement has sparked heated debate in a nation reeling from a debt crisis that's forced the government to take drastic austerity measures - including higher taxes, wage and pension cuts, and price spikes in public services.

What started as a small pressure group of residents outside Athens angered by higher highway tolls has grown into a movement affecting ever more sectors of society - one that many say is being hijacked by left-wing parties keen to ride popular discontent.

A rash of political scandals in recent years, including a dubious land swap deal with a rich monastery and alleged bribes in state contracts - has fueled the rebellious mood.

Stormtrooper

Governor Scot Walker Takes Union Busting Tactics from the Master

May 1933: Hitler Abolishes Unions

Madison protest1
© Jess Denni
Madison protest
On May 2nd, 1933, the day after Labor day, Nazi groups occupied union halls and labor leaders were arrested. Trade Unions were outlawed by Adolf Hitler, while collective bargaining and the right to strike was abolished. This was the beginning of a consolidation of power by the fascist regime which systematically wiped out all opposition groups, starting with unions, liberals, socialists, and communists using Himmler's state police.

Fast forward to America today, particularly Wisconsin. Governor Walker and the Republican/Tea Party members of the state legislature are attempting to pass a bill that would not only severely punish public unions (with exception for the police, fire, and state trooper unions that supported his campaign), but it would effectively end 50 years to the right of these workers to collectively bargain.
Collective bargaining is a process of voluntary negotiations between employers and trade unions aimed at reaching agreements which regulate working conditions. Collective agreements usually set out wage scales, working hours, training, health and safety, overtime, grievance mechanisms and rights to participate in workplace or company affairs. -wiki

Stormtrooper

Greek Police in Fresh Clashes With Protesters

Greek police clashed with protesters on Wednesday as around 100,000 workers, pensioners and students marched to parliament in protest at austerity policies aimed at helping Greece cope with a huge debt crisis.


Arrow Down

US: Anti-abortion Billboard in New York Sparks Outrage

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© Splash
The controversial poster on corner of Sixth Avenue and Watts Street, SoHo, New York
An anti-abortion billboard featuring a young black girl and the slogan "the most dangerous place for an African-American is in the womb" has provoked sharp criticism in New York.

The poster advertises a Texas-based group called Life Always, which campaigns against what it calls a "genocidal plot" against unborn babies. It is on display in the SoHo area of Manhattan.

On its website, Life Always states: "Abortions among African-American women are three times that of the rest of the population. Over 25 per cent of the next generation is being wiped out as we speak".

Bill de Blasio, the city's public advocate, described the advertisement as "grossly offensive to women and minorities". "This billboard simply doesn't belong in New York City," said Mr de Blasio.

Attention

Canada: Teacher Sex Trial Ends in Hung Jury

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© CBC/Mike Laanela
A mistrial has been declared in a Vernon, B.C., provincial court in the trial of a teacher accused of having sex with a student.
A B.C. schoolteacher charged with having sex with a 12-year-old male student walked free Wednesday after a hung jury prompted the judge to declare a mistrial.

Deborah Ashton, now 45, was charged with invitation to sexual touching, sexual assault and touching for sexual purposes a person under 14 years of age while she taught in Vernon, B.C., in the province's southern Interior.

The jury sent a note to the judge Wednesday, saying they were hopelessly deadlocked after two days of deliberations.

The judge then declared a mistrial.

The case has been put over until April 11 when a new trial date will be set.

Her accuser, now 21, and who cannot be identified, said he and Ashton had about 200 sexual encounters, starting in 2003 when he was her 12-year-old student.

Info

US: Study: 'Sidewalk Rage' Plagues New York City Streets

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© File/AP Photo
Pedestrians on 5th Avenue, New York City
City Has Thousands Upon Thousands Of People Per Square Mile

You're walking to work, making good time, and then... someone steps in front of you, moving at a snail's pace. Or a tourist blocks your path to snap a picture. Or some knucklehead in front of you is focused on their Blackberry, not where they're going.

We've all been there. If just the thought of any of these scenarios makes you reach the boiling point, though, you may have a problem. Apparently, you don't have to hit the road to feel the rage.

Researchers say "sidewalk rage" is real.

1010 WINS' John Montone tries to stop and talk to some aggressive walkers in Midtown

Aggressive walkers can express their frustration in different forms and intensity levels - ranging from staring down a slow walker to physically bumping into them. Experts say acting out on sidewalk rage may be a sign of a psychiatric condition known as "intermittent explosive disorder."

"I am one of those sidewalk ragers, it just drives me crazy," Joe Camposo, of Westbury, confessed to 1010 WINS' John Montone. "It's either move or get out of the way. I have no patience."

Two women from Brooklyn told Montone they've been victims of sidewalk rage getting pushed, knocked down and elbowed.

Researchers are conducting studies to determine what sets people off and how it can be curbed - especially since the sidewalks aren't getting any less crowded.

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House

US: New York House Found With Filthy Animals Including Calf

Dozens of flea-infested animals and several rotting animal corpses were removed from a filthy New York home where an elderly woman with dementia lived with two younger people, authorities said on Wednesday.

Living in the house were a calf, fancy hens, rats, rabbits, a chinchilla, a Mallard duck, a pheasant and other animals, said Sergeant Regina Benfante of the Suffolk County, New York, Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

"You name it, and that type of animal was in there," she said. All told, 76 live animals and about 10 corpses were found, she said.

Three people also lived in the house -- the 87-year-old owner who suffers from dementia, family friend Alan Warner, 23, and his fiance, she said.

Warner was cited for violating town codes regarding the animals but no animal cruelty charges had been filed while the SPCA investigates, she said.